By Linda Dillman
The Canal Winchester Area Historical Society will “bring history to life” in downtown Canal
Winchester on Oct. 19 and 20 as it presents the 13th annual Historic Ghost Tour, exploring historic locations throughout downtown Canal Winchester.
Visitors will be guided through a short walking tour of six sites as they are entertained by actors depicting people from Canal Winchester’s past. Tours will last approximately 90 minutes and will begin at 6:30 p.m. each night, with the last tour departing at 7:30 p.m. All tours will depart from the Frances Steube Community Center, 22 S. Trine St. Tickets will be available at the Community Center each evening of the tour beginning at 6 p.m. Tickets are offered at $10 per adult and $5 per student aged 6-18; children 5 and under will be free. Please leave pets at home.
There are no advance sales. Free parking is available throughout the city in public lots, on street and at the front and back of the former McDorman museum.
The Historic Ghost Tour sites
On Trine Street, Canal Winchester City Councilwoman Jill Amos will portray Savannah Trine, the wife of Reuben Trine, who served on the first city council. The family owned a tannery and shoe store and one of their children left a mark on Canal Winchester as town librarian.
In a High Street building, Bill Staber is portraying cartoonist Eugene Craig, who worked in the then-village between 1982-1984 drawing editorial cartoons and a Sunday panel.
At the former Peoples Bank, veteran Ghost Tour actor Patrick Murphy will reprise the role of E.C. Chaney. Chaney was the first and longest tenured cashier at the bank building, which is now used primarily for city council meetings.
At Shade on the Canal, Minda Taylor, a retired teacher, is Helen Shade, who, along with her husband, opened the restaurant in 1940.
“I went on previous Ghost Tours,” said Taylor, “and when I saw a notice asking for actors, I thought, ‘why not?’ I talked with women who knew Helen and looked at photographs of her for inspiration. I think it’s so interesting to think back in time, even before cars were on the road, and then see what this village has become. The people portrayed on the tour were real people who lived their lives in this town and this tour lets their memory live on.”
At the Metzger Chevrolet site on Waterloo Street, Ron White is playing the part of Mr. Metzger who owned the dealership from 1923 until he passed away in 1964. Canal Winchester is linked with a long history of car sales and a vintage 1951 Chevy will be on display both nights.
The former Canal Winchester School complex on Washington Street will feature Superintendent George Schultz as portrayed by Jeff Sweeney. Schultz was superintendent from 1949-56.
All tour stops are within easy walking distance of each other. However, for individuals with mobility issues, a van will transport people between stops.
According to organizer Sean Cleary, the event is appropriate for all ages as it explores historical careers/occupations and is informative and fun.
“It’s an opportunity for people to walk around our community, learn about the six tour stops and other happenings in Winchester,” said Cleary.
Tour proceeds help support the Canal Winchester Area Historical Society’s core programs and preservation projects. For information visit cwhistory.org.